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2023 Ford F-150 Rattler First Look: A Cheap Way to Get Dirty

2023 Ford F-150 Rattler First Look: A Cheap Way to Get Dirty

An F-150 you won't feel bad about bashing

  • Ford announces a new Rattler package for the 2023 F-150.
  • It's built on the base XL trim pickup.
  • A bunch of off-road bits make it more capable when the going gets nasty.

Trucks are no longer just utilitarian machines destined for a hard life on job sites and ranches, and some F-150 models now top $75,000 to start. But Ford has seemingly realized that not everyone who wants an off-road-ready F-150 will spring for a Raptor, which starts at over $70,000 (BMW M3 money), or even the $50,000-plus Tremor, so it's gone and added some extra off-road bits to the base model XL F-150 for 2023 in the form of the Rattler package.

While the Rattler name conjures up images of noise-making toys for infants, this truck is aimed squarely at F-150 buyers who want a play in the mud — or dirt, or sand, or any other unpaved sort of terrain — at a more affordable starting price. The Rattler comes equipped with the FX4 package as standard, which, on top of standard four-wheel drive, adds skid plates, hill descent control, some specially tuned off-road shock absorbers, and an electronic-locking rear differential. It also comes equipped with some knobby off-road tires covering 18-inch wheels.

Other telltale signs of a Rattler include unique side vents and some graphics near the rear end that have a rattlesnake-like design to them. Inside, Rattlers get some bronze accents and stitching to match, similar to what Ford did with the interior of the Rattler's bigger sibling, the Tremor. Ford hasn't said what powertrains will be available with the Rattler, but XL models are available with a naturally aspirated V6, the turbocharged 2.7-liter EcoBoost engine or a 5.0-liter V8, and it stands to reason that one of those will be under the Rattler's hood.

The Rattler goes on sale this fall, and even though pricing is yet to come, we expect it to be a much more affordable alternative to the Tremor and the Raptor.

Edmunds says

The 2023 F-150 Rattler sounds like an inexpensive way to have some dirty fun, and we're all for it.